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The Miley Cyrus controversy

2013-08-28 10:54

GALLERY: Miley Cyrus’ fashion transformation

I've been thinking about Miley.

The now infamous performance is not important news. I don't think anyone would say otherwise. It did grab our attention though. My word, yes.

My initial reaction to complaints about Miley's dance was irritation. The General Public are so quick to jump on the bandwagon every time a pop star dances in a vaguely provocative manner.

Suddenly everyone's the morality police.

Suddenly everyone's a conservative.

Before I even watched the performance, I was sure that it wasn't that big a deal. Then I watched it.

 Yeah, OK, it was dreadful. From the decision to use (cough-pedo-cough) bears to bending over in front of a fully-dressed married man who's recently been at the center of a 'perpetuating rape culture' controversy, Miley's performance seemed to be blatantly and unapologetically a mix of all of our worst suspicions about young, female singers. The morality police, for once, really seemed to have some sort of point.

Besides the obvious fact that the routine was just tacky, and assuming that being sexy, desiring sex or growing up are not crimes, there are some genuine concerns about the performance that I feel are worth a read, especially the points made about racism.

Still, it got me thinking.

I'm a fan of Miley. I don't consider her on the level of Amanda Palmer or anything, but I like her for what she is: a pop star.

I have a massively high tolerance for cuteness and pop, (you can blame my sister Pamela for that), and so I actually can enjoy things like Hannah Montana and Miley's music career.

Enough making excuses, my point is I've watched Miley's transition from Disney star into adulthood and I've been vaguely wondering a bit about it for awhile.

It's seemed fairly clear to me that Miley has, from a very young age, known that the world was going to be unforgiving when she grew up.

She was a Disney princess, Hannah Montana, a role model to Southern Baptist tweens.

Britney arrived on the scene in a sexy schoolgirl uniform, and the world nearly had a heart attack when everyone suddenly noticed she liked looking and acting sexy. How much worse would the reaction be when this kid grew up?

Miley is not new to controversy. She's been accused of everything from promoting pedophilia to acting like a stripper.

I guess, if you want to, you can use these previous scandals as evidence that she's a damn dirty whore who's single-handedly destroying the moral fiber of the Yew-nigh-ted Staytes, (if you can do that with a straight face), or that she's always been sexually troubled, and maybe you'd be right.

I'm wondering if she's not actually taking all the things that people so want her to be, and being them. A sort of "This is what you wanted, this is what you're going to get."

If there's anything people love more than a star, it's a disgraced star. We all know this, and we know this well. Miley Cyrus has known this - she grew up in the industry, how could she not? She also knew her performance was going to make a big splash. And look at the statement she made with it.

The teddy bears allow us to accuse her of mocking the concept of an innocent child star and promoting pedophilia. The stripping allows us to accuse her of actually stripping. The dirty dancing with Robin Thicke reminds me of the Adam Shankman lap-dancing scandal.

Assume, for a moment, that when Miley did that Vanity Fair cover, she just thought she was doing the arty shoot professional photographers were telling her she was doing.

Assume that, when she held onto a pole, it was just for balance because she was standing on the top of a moving ice cream truck. And, assume, just for a bit, that when she was dancing with an openly-gay man, it didn't mean she was having sex with him. Assume that Miley is fucking sick of being accused of things she's not guilty of, so she's gone and given us something to really complain about.

There is a strong chance I'm just being ridiculously naive, and I certainly don't claim that this is what happened out there on that stage.

All I know is, if I had grown up in the entertainment industry; if I had been, by the time I was 18, at the center of not one, but many witch hunts that included angry "moral" people accusing me of being a dirty rotten slut who's going to burn in hell; if I knew how fickle and quick to turn on their darlings the public is; and if I had decided I honestly didn't give a rat's arse as long as I was happy with myself; I might be the sort of person to get on stage and send out a metaphorical "fuck you" to the audience too.
 
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